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Friday, January 2, 2015

In My Kitchen, January 2015

The Christmas table complete with a gingerbread, icing sugar and olive branch forest.  Our Christmas and New Year period involved a steady flow of family and friends visiting, some tasty meals, yabby catching expeditions to the dam, a few late nights and a few cold drinks.  It was fun and low key, just the way it should be.


I am still shelling chickpeas that I grew as a green manure crop last year.  With only one or two peas in each pod some patience is required for this job.   


The festivities and Christmas cooking might be over but farm work rolls on and workers still need to be fed.  After harvesting apricots in December I made a batch of apricot jam using this recipe from Sophie’s blog and book.  With plenty of jam on hand, jam tarts seemed an obvious choice for some New Year’s Day baking.  When tarts need to be transported to the paddock or further afield I have found muffin cases provide extra stability when packed snugly into plastic containers.  Packing food safely and neatly gives me a sense of satisfaction, strange I know!


The first Snake beans for the season are heading for my kitchen.  They are growing in the middle of a tomato and basil jungle which doesn't seem to be worrying them, so far.


Bloggers are some of the kindest people I know.  Just prior to Christmas I was truly touched when our mail plane delivered a parcel all the way from Anne in England.  I know I am not the only blogger who loves enamel ware.  Jane and Brydie, don’t you just love this mug?  The bottle of Slamseys Blackberry Gin is disappearing quickly.  Gin is a lovely tipple, who knew?  Thank you Anne.  


Are you baking or packing or harvesting or enjoying a quiet festive drink?  
I hope you are enjoying January so far.

As always I am linking up Celia and many other busy kitchens from all across the world.

56 comments :

  1. Your Christmas table looked wonderful .. That was so nice of Anne to send you the gin and mug, how thoughtful. I wish I was baking, but I'm in my garden instead and that's a nice place to be. Happy New Year to you :)

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    1. The garden is always a nice place to be be Julie, Happy New Year and thanks for calling in with your kind words :)

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  2. I love your Christmas table Jane and that enamel mug is lovely. Miss A and I are making the most of the holiday pace and we made monte carlos this morning. Happy New Year xx

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    1. Monte Carlos are a great idea Kate, I bet they were yummy! xx

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  3. That table looks beautiful! Yabbying would have to be the best fun I can think of and the tarts look delicious. Thanks for sharing.

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  4. An amazing table. How nice to get a gift from England for Christmas.

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  5. I love snake beans! My grandmother used to grow them for us!

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  6. Your Christmas sounds perfect, family, feasting and fun. Your table decoration is adorable. Actually so it that mug you've been gifted. It sounds like things might be busy at your place. What a good idea for the tarts. It is always good to know food has arrived and is eaten in the state it was made. Merry Christmas and I hope you have a lovely New Year, enjoy 2015.

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind comments and continued support, all the best for 2015!

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  7. Oh wow your Christmas table is so beautiful Jane! Your gingerbread houses look perfect.
    I'm craving jam tarts now....

    As always I absolutely loved peeping into your kitchen! So much inspiration and goodness,
    Happy New Year,
    Sarah xx

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    1. Thank you so much Sarah, I love peeping into your kitchen too! x

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  8. Happy new year lovely Jane! And just look at your beautiful table! xox

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  9. Your gingerbread houses are beautiful :D Happy New Year Jane :D Regards from Poland
    ~ Ewa

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  10. Those gingerbread houses look like something out of a fairy tale.

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    1. Oh that is very kind...thank you for calling in. We had fun creating our table.

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  11. Jane, I love all your produce and the enamel cup is gorgeous :-) thanks for sharing!!! Liz xx

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  12. I'm not sure that I love chickpeas enough to shell that many! I love the gingerbread houses on your table; every year I vow to make a gingerbread house but never get around to it but having seen this maybe this year I will.
    Thank you for sharing - your blog brings me much pleasure throughout the year :)
    Happy New Year!

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    1. Anne...freeze the house pieces in advance and then the creative part is easy & relatively stress free! Happy New Year, I appreciate your ongoing blog support :)

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  13. Jane, your Christmas table looks fabulous. I also like the look of those snake beans, I think I will try to get some seeds next year.

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    1. I find snake beans easy to grow Glenda, I am sure you would too. Thank you for calling in!

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  14. Beautiful photos, and I love that enamel mug! Your jam tarts look absolutely perfect. I'm so looking forward to making apricot jam when summer comes round to the US. This was my first time posting an In My Kitchen post and I'm so enjoying visiting all the participants.

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    1. Thank you so much Jean and welcome to In My Kitchen! x

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  15. That cup is just beautiful! I'm so interested in the chickpeas! I've never seen them grown. Your little tarts look delicious.

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    1. Thank you Clare...I knew very little about growing chickpeas until recently either. It was very much an experiment!

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  16. I adore that enamelware cup!!! Before I read that paragraph I was distracted by the bunny on the bike. Love it Jane, lucky you for such a gorgeous parcel.
    Beautiful photos as always Jane. I hope 2015 is a wonderful year for you. Xx

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    1. Thank you Brydie. Wishing you a wonderful 2015 also...I appreciate your ongoing blog support x

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  17. Happy new year Jane! Your Christmas table looks beautiful and I am so impressed by your chickpea haul!! It does look like it needs some patience to shell them all - but what a treat!! What are you planning on making with them first? Xx

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    1. Thank you Mrs M...predictably hummus will probably be the first thing I make with them. Or perhaps I will add them to a hearty lamb dish when the weather cools down! x

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  18. happy new year dear jane..your kitchen is full of beautiful things as always..i bet your children (and everyone else) loved the gingerbread houses..they are so sweet..and so are the jam tarts..i planted the snake bean seeds you sent me among some other climbing bean seeds but i'm not sure what's what at the moment..will have to wait til they're producing to find out if i get a crop of them or not..and i love the enamel..x

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    1. I had almost forgotten that I had sent you those seeds Jane! I hope they grow for you. Happy New Year to you too...I appreciate your ongoing blog support!

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  19. What a beautiful table! I aspire to do something like that every year and it never happens, maybe next year. Your fresh produce looks lovely. Unfortunately we are in winter so our garden is going to have to wait. Happy New Year!

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    1. Thank you for calling in Gretchen. Stay warm!

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  20. Your Christmas table décor is lovely. The olive branches top it off perfectly.
    I bet the jam tarts went down a treat with those hungry farm workers.
    Your garden is looking so green and lush. What do you recommend getting started with planting in the coming months?
    x

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    1. Thank you Zara...stay cool. Hope to catch up soon x

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  21. Oh Jane that table is gorgeous! As usual some lovely things floating through your kitchen. A belated Merry Christmas to you and best wishes for a very happy and successful 2015! xx

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    1. I love it when you call in JJ. Happy New Year to you too x

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  22. Another busy year Jane. Very clever idea to put the jam tarts in muffin cases for transport. I must store than idea away. I have harvested nothing except the odd silverbeet leaf and baby capsicum this year as we were away in the spring and it's far too hot now. I did get some apricots from a work colleague but not enough for jam. Thanks for the festive tour. Cheers Fiona.

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    1. Thank you Fiona...we grow things in challenging conditions don't we!

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    2. PS Thank you for the good Twitter vibes too :)

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  23. Hi Jane! I just love your Christmas table! It sounds like lots of fun was had around it! A couple of sips of that gorgeous gin would have added something special to the festivites! The patty pans are an inspired idea to transport your gorgeous little tarts - I will be trying this idea very soon! Your garden is looking lush - I've not grown either snake beans or chickpeas for that matter! Food for thought! Thanks so much for sharing your kitchen adventures this month. Happy New Year!

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    1. Food for thought...I like your thinking Mariane, thank you for calling in!

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  24. Your Christmas table was a joy, thank you for sharing it with us! And isn't Anne the best? I was so chuffed to receive her boozy present. We are inundated with snake beans - literally! This week we're picking more than we can hold in one hand each day! :) Have a great 2015 darling Jane!

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    1. Your snake beans sound spectacular Celia...happy growing and cooking to you again in 2015 x

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  25. Um, I think I already knew that gin was a lovely tipple - but this ones looks lovely. what a thoughtful gift.

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    1. Thanks Amanda...I am rather new to appreciating gin!

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  26. Happy New Year. Look at that divine Christmas table! I admire your patience shelling chickpeas and how fantastically long are your snake beans. I love a tipple of gin and enamel ware too, what a lovely present.

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    1. Thank you Vicki, lovely to hear from you!

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  27. I too have been blessed with little gifts of gin from Anne and Beth in the past ... awesome stuff isn't it!

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    1. Anne is very kind isn't she! Thank you for calling in.

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  28. I love that you grow chickpeas - not something I had thought of, but I have tried growing other legumes but with no success. Happy 2015

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Hello and welcome. I will try to reply to all comments eventually because I love the conversation! Jane